2016 AMERICAN ART AWARDS WINNING ARTISTS FOR
CATEGORY 4. CHARCOAL / INK / PENCIL – HUMAN FIGURE:
1ST PLACE, and “MASTERPIECE”: DEBI PICKLER, USA, www.debi-studios.com, “Character” 10 x 13″ Pencil on illustration board.
2ND PLACE: DAN PYLE, USA, http://danpyleartist.com, “And Nowhere To Go” 29 x 37” Charcoal on illustration board.
3RD PLACE: DAN PYLE, USA, http://danpyleartist.com, “Pageant” 25 x 39” Charcoal on illustration board.
4TH PLACE: STEVE BROSNAC, USA, www.stevebrosnaccreativearts.com, “Saroyan’s Stare” 18 x 24″ Charcoal on paper.
5TH – TIE: JESSICA ZOU, USA, “Masquerade” 19.5 x 13.5” Charcoal on paper.
5TH – TIE: ERNIE L. FOURNET, USA, www.elfournet.com, “Mother Machree” 28 x 20″ Graphite on illustration board.
6TH PLACE: SUTTHIRAK PRASITSART, THAILAND, www.psdrawingart.wordpress.com, “Her With Rose” 39.5 x 51″ Charcoal on canvas.
BIO ON 1ST PLACE WINNER DEBI PICKLER, “MASTERPIECE”:
Debi Pickler knows exactly who to thank for her successful career as an artist. “My Mom was a tremendously gifted artist,” Debi says. “I remember watching her paint and draw when I was a little girl, wishing I could be that good at creating art. She made it look so simple. I was truly fascinated by how she selected what to draw or paint and how she made them come to life.”
Inspired by her mother’s art, Debi began drawing and painting when she was in kindergarten. She became completely immersed in art, and before long had a collection of work in a variety of media. “I had so many drawings and paintings that I decided to have an art show in our back yard. My dad worked with me to make a sign for our mailbox announcing the show, and I hung up all of my art on our back yard fence.” But before the show saw its first visitor, a sudden downpour from a rainstorm ruined all of her work. “Dad came to the rescue though, and bought the whole collection for 2 dollars. And that, was the beginning, of my artistic career.”
Debi continued to develop her skills, becoming adept in a variety of different media such as pencil, oil, acrylic, watercolor, pastel, clay, wool sculpting, airbrushing, digital art and wood working and steadily becoming more proficient. After earning a BFA, emphasis in illustration from Kansas University, she ventured into the world of commercial art. Now, after more than 20 years as a graphic designer, she has worked for many different organizations such as a major university creating medical illustrations, several consumer products companies creating marketing pieces, trade show booths, and packaging and large companies who are in the business of selling their services to their clients. “Sometimes I think I’d like to focus on just one media, but I just wouldn’t be happy,” she says. “It’s just how my mind works. It seems like I’m always thinking about art, about new ways to do things. I’ll have dreams about creating art and I’ll wake up at 3 a.m. with a new ideas that I just have to try. My mind just never stops.”
Regardless of the media, there are common threads that run through nearly all of her work. First, Debi is obsessive about detail and loves putting extremely fine detail into her work. “I like for people to be able to really look at my art, to spend time with it and be rewarded by finding some new, tiny detail that maybe no one else had noticed,” she says. “That drives me.” And, as with the viewers of her art, she is passionate about her clients. “I like challenges” says the dedicated runner/cyclist who has completed several marathons and bike tours. “And walking into a new situation with a client, learning about their communication, marketing, branding, advertising
or fine art needs and coming up with something that ‘wows’ that client is tremendously rewarding and inspiring to me!”
That inspiration seems to be a constant for Debi, whose greatest attribute may well be that she sees the world as her canvas, a place full of art and the potential for new, more intriguing works of art. “Art is everywhere … it’s all around us and I believe the inspiration I find in the world and the talent to create art comes from God,” she says. “Of course, it’s up to me to see what’s out there, dare to live outside the box, work extremely hard developing my talent and the ability share it with others.”
While Debi’s path has taken many twists and turns throughout her artistic life, she still looks back to where that path began, at a backyard art show in New Jersey, where a dad and his little girl turned a rain-out into a life.
Debi Pickler is a member of SCBWI (Society of Children Book Writers and Illustrators), BOMH (Best of Missouri Hands), St. Louis Artist Guild and IGOR (International Guild of Realism). Having studied at the University of Kansas obtaining a BFA in Illustration, she has won countless awards for her art (listed in the earlier AAA article naming the three big prize winners).
HOLLYWOOD ALERT: WHAT ARE YOUR FUTURE GOALS?
My future plans are designed with one very clear goal in mind: I will be a highly successful entrepreneurial artist. My view of this is I will work independently, full-time, creating pieces that challenge my skills and demand that I bring them to the highest possible levels. I will work to my extremely high standards. I plan to create highly realistic artwork, as well as a complete series of children’s books. I will be my own harshest critic and I will produce pieces that gain attention by winning or performing very well in competitions. I also will initially promote and sell these pieces at art festivals. As my work earns a higher profile and more attention, it will “be discovered,” and draw the recognition and attention I will need to “take off.” Simple? Yes. Easy? No. But I WILL do it.
SEE MORE OF PICKLER’S WORK HERE: www.debi-studios.com
Artists can enter art for the 2017 contest here: www.AmericanArtAwards.com